Cat tells us that, "Thousands of dancers auditioned for the chance... to sit in one of these 33 chairs." Well, I don't think that's exactly right. But tonight we're seeing them whittle down the group from 33 to the top 20.
The show starts on the stage in Hollywood with Cat in a groovy sequined minidress, so all is right in the world. OMG WAIT NO THAT IS A ROMPER. Oh, Cat. I'm going to need the full two hours to see if I can really sign off on that. Tonight's jidges are Mary, Nigel, and Adam Shankman, so all is REALLY right in the world. Summer isn't complete without Adam getting overly emotional on my TV set. When Cat asks Nigel what we can expect from the top 20, he says that this year they aren't sure if these kids will really be able to keep up. What? No, seriously, that's basically what he said. With that, we get to top 20 time. And my apologies in advance if I butcher the spelling of anyone's name since there are no helpful on-screen graphics this week.
First to make the long walk is Fik-Shun. Nigel tells him they love his personality and if they could put it in a trained dancer, that person could really win. He promises to work hard and unsurprisingly, Nigel tells him he is in. Emilio the hip-hopper is also in, but it's the fastest acceptance bit ever and I suspect this doesn't bode well for him. Marcus Shields is next up and all he can think about is when he was rejected in Season 4. Unfortunately, he just experiences the same thing again in Season 10. The last hip-hop dancer up is Mariah, who Minnie Driver predicted would make the top 20 when she auditioned in Austin. Twitch tries to fake her out but she's in.
Before those three dance, Cat tells us that Emilio then got injured and had to withdraw from the competition, which explains why he got only about two seconds of airtime earlier. Poor Marcus doesn't seem to be brought back to replace him since just Fik-Shun and Mariah are dancing the first dance. They dance a routine choreographed by Luther Brown to "Ball" by T.I. featuring Lil Wayne. It's always fun to watch the kids dance in their own styles to kick things off and this routine is fun if unremarkable. Fik-Shun truly does have a natural rhythm and style; Mariah does a good job but it doesn't look as effortless as Fik. Seriously, I've got to shorten his name for recapping purposes. Interestingly, all three judges seem to think the opposite -- that Mariah was awesome and Fik needed to work harder and not just rely on personality. It's like I'm not a dancer at all and might not be able to pick up all the technicalities, or something. Weird.